Is your compliance team on the verge of a burnout?

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Is your compliance team on the verge of a burnout?
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With an increasing demand for regulatory compliance in a continuously evolving technology industry, a research report titled “Voice of the KYC Compliance Professional” by Kyckr said nearly three-quarters of the compliance workforce felt burnt out.
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This can be detrimental as even the smallest mistake can cause million-dollar losses. A few well-placed strategies can ensure that a Compliance Burnout can be reduced effectively.

The pandemic has forced transformation in almost all sectors. Businesses had no choice but to go digital under the global lockdown conditions, and the only industries that thrived even when streets were empty were the ones that underwent a rapid digital transformation.

With this change came the challenges of data privacy, network privacy, and a whole host of other regulations that were imperative. One of the most active areas of the enterprise was the teams that were ensuring their company followed all regulations and compliances, to stay on the right side of the law.

Once the business environment became increasingly digital and the restrictions began to ease, many areas began to bounce back, especially those of compliance and quality checking. Working hybrid, adjusting to the new normal, and yet ensuring all compliances documents, data and regulations were on dot, made many compliances resources and teams feel overworked and underpaid. The Kyckr report says that more than half of them wish to change their jobs.

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Coupled with the need to integrate rapidly changing and emerging technologies, and demanding absolute focus and attention to detail, the mental and physical well-being of the compliance teams was taking a step down, and eventually causing burn-out.

The top causes of burn-out can be placed into 3 distinct areas, as follows:
  1. Prevention of violations, with minimal coordination
  2. Lack of management support
  3. Accountability and blame

1. Prevention of violations, with minimal coordination



As a general rule, the responsibility of ensuring that all compliance regulations and laws are met and no violations are occurring falls solely on the Compliance Officer and compliance team. However, it is not always fully acknowledged as an essential role by the stakeholder or by other teams. Many other departments of an organization might find the team to be intrusive, which in turn hinders the team’s duties. This can cause burnout for the compliance leader, and in turn, cause unwanted errors and issues going past unnoticed.

How can this be avoided?

One way to handle this is to create a timeline around the needs of the other areas of the organization. In this way, they can reduce the workload and stress caused to the stakeholder, and also create a proper format in which all requests related to compliance are handled and closed.

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Another path would be to simplify the controls and decrease the duties connected to compliance activities, while also creating relevance for the departments. Not only would this create smoother coordination amongst teams, but it would also allow the value of compliance to be visible to all in the company.

2. Lack of management support



While the first topic touches upon inter-departmental duties and responsibilities, there is always a requirement for support from the higher management in ensuring that the compliance structures created are enforced, and followed. Inadequate funds are another cause that could cause the team to withdraw support or provide inadequate support, along with little control over their responsibilities. This causes frustration, which adds to burnout.

How can this be avoided?


One simple strategy would be to include the compliance officer in the top management meetings. This would allow them to quantify the risks involved, and create the required awareness of the hard work and accuracy involved in keeping the organization above any legal issues. By adding a monetary value to the risks, the management can then better understand where the funds are to be allocated. A compliance officer would also be able to add operational value by doing so and find it easier to add more input and create effective controls in the organizations with ease.

3. Accountability and blame


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Being a compliance leader is no easy feat, due to the ever-changing laws and regulations. From certifications and reports, audits, and regulations, a leader is in charge of every single compliance of the company. While strict controls may be placed by the compliance leader, there is no actual hold of the leader over these controls. This does not mitigate that any unforeseeable occurrence of any breach of compliance would still fall squarely on the compliance leader, and this blame can cause unwanted stress.

How can this be avoided?


The data collected from the primary sources can be sifted when received, to check if there is any possibility of an issue arising. This control can be slowly integrated into the daily operations of the organization, and create a process that can predict, detect and circumvent any probable negative outcomes to compliance. Being embedded into the process performed by a department, it has minimal chances of being neglected, thus creating a stronger structure overall.

Decreasing burnout for the team gives the company a better performance output and also ensures higher job satisfaction, which in turn reduces the workforce turnover for an organization. This can positively boost the outcomes of the organization while creating a strong control system to ensure minimal errors, thereby increasing the efficiency of the organization overall.

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